Craft Techniques

Today, baskets are mostly made from ilala palm fronds, which are plentifully available. Unfortunately, except for isizimane and the umthombothi/mdoni mixture that makes a pitch black colour, the dyes are not colourfast and should be kept out of sunlight as much as possible…more



When a Zulu wife offers beer to her husband or to guests, she does so in a beautifully shaped black pot, the famous ukhamba…more





Mat Making
For hundreds of years, mats of various sizes have been used for eating, sitting and sleeping.  Today it is mostly the large sleeping mat, the icansi, which is used for sleeping, sitting and ceremonial purposes.  Beautifully embroidered mats are prized presents at gift exchanging ceremonies between the families of a bride and groom…more



Zulu Beer Ingredients

Utshwala besizulu (Zulu Beer)
No Zulu ceremony is complete without the ceremonial passing around of the clay ukhamba.  Utshwala is an example of this traditional fermented drink…more

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